Posts tagged #Leadership

The Three Best Professional Development Trends in 2019

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Professional trends come and go. Some we are happy to kick to the curb, others we hope are here to stay! This year we’ve seen a few shifts that make the workplace more progressive and competitive. These trends are geared toward improving the employee and, in turn, improving the business.

Here are three trends in workplace professional development that you should take full advantage of to end the year strong.

  1. Learning in the Workplace. From peer-to-peer lunch and learns to employer education credits, it’s clear companies are interested in giving their employees the opportunity to learn new things and put them into practice at the workplace.

    Businesses and industries are constantly evolving, and companies must invest in education for their people to maintain a competitive edge. Think about how quickly the internet has changed how we operate. It’s changed everything from the way we look for jobs to the ways we communicate with team members. New standards evolve all the time, and your company needs you to be the best of the best.

  2. Flipped Decision Making: Bottom-Up Approach. When organizations function top-down, the decision making happens at the top and gets relayed from director to manager, and manager to the team. We’ve seen this flip to a bottom-up approach. Employees lowest on the corporate ladder are empowered to voice their opinions and suggestions on company matters, essentially shifting decision making to the bottom instead of from the top. This works well because those with the most up-to-date information can make quick decisions without the delay that bureaucracy often entails.

  3. Coach for Leadership, Not Management. There’s a push to train employees to lead rather than manage, and we couldn’t be happier about it. Why? Because managers assign—leaders inspire. Leaders raise others up to put the best people in the right seats of the company. That’s good news for anyone looking for a job. It’s not about completing a to-do list, it’s about doing a great job.

Staying on top of trends while navigating a job hunt can be challenging. If you’re looking to make a career change, we’d love to connect.

Our team at The Wilbanks Consulting Group helps everyone from high schoolers to seasoned professionals identify and achieve their career goals.

Posted on August 13, 2019 and filed under Career, Leadership.

Five Books That Will Inspire, Motivate, & Equip For Success

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Summer is coming to a close, the weather is cooling off, and we’re spending more time indoors. As the season ends, it marks a time to reflect on where you are in your career and where you aspire to be.

Are you hoping for a promotion?

A career change?

Perhaps you’re wrapping up school and looking for a competitive edge over other applicants?

Whatever your goals may be, our team put together a list of five great reads that will inspire, encourage, and equip you to succeed. We hope you enjoy these books as much as we have!

Check out these books if you want to be...

1. If You Want To Be A Better Leader

Work is more meaningful when we know the reason behind what we’re doing. However, most of our lives we’re told what to do, but not why we should do it. Simon Sinek’s Start With Why dives into the principal of leading with the “why” and how to use it to become great leaders.

2. If You Want To Be Fearless

Mistakes happen no matter who you are. It’s how you overcome the mistakes that help you learn and grow. In Permission To Screw Up by Kristen Hadeed, Kristen shares her experience (and mistakes) she’s had with her company, Student Maid. In the book, she dismisses the idea that leaders and organizations need to be perfect. Instead, she encourages learning by taking action and embracing failures, rather than waiting and thinking.

3. If You Want To Inspire Others

Servant leadership is the concept that managers and company leaders should aspire to serve their employees. This goes against the traditional company structure where managers expect their employees to serve them. The Serving Leader by Ken Jennings dives into this principle and gives ways to implement servant leadership tactics within your organizations.

4. If You Want To Help Grow The Company

Is your company growing? Are processes in place to sustain the growth? If not, give Jim Collin’s bestselling book, Good To Great a read. Jim describes the framework for how companies can make the step from good to great, and how and why some companies fail to make the transition.

5.  If You Want To Improve Company Culture

Former President of Starbucks, Howard Behar helped establish Starbucks’ company culture. His book, It’s Not About The Coffee, reveals critical leadership principles that helped shape Starbucks “people over profits” mentality.  

Want more resources to help you succeed in your career? Our team of experts can help you understand what YOU need for career success. We use proven assessments of personality type, interests, and strengths to create a strategy for your future growth and development. Contact us for more information.

Posted on September 18, 2018 and filed under Leadership.

How To Recognize The Best Career Search Advice

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Everyone has advice to give. When it comes to your career, it’s incredibly important that you seek out and listen to the right people. The “right” people will be successful professionals who have learned from their experiences, both wins and failures. They might be people you know, but can also be those who have risen in leadership nationally or globally. The “right” people will also be those who genuinely want to see you succeed. And they will support you in making the right decision for you, even if they suggest something a little different. You are the planner of your career path. It’s up to you to decide what’s best for you!

Below you’ll find our favorite quotes from some highly influential people in the world. As you read, decide what you love and run with it!

Excellent Advice For The Powerful Leaders

My paternal grandmother, Mrs. Annie Henderson, gave me advice that I have used for 65 years. She said, ‘If the world puts you on a road you do not like, if you look ahead and do not want that destination which is being offered and you look behind and you do not want to return to you place of departure, step off the road. Build yourself a new path.’
— Maya Angelou (As recorded in The Best Advice I Ever Got by Katie Couric)
I don’t think we talk about failure enough. It would’ve really helped to have someone who had had a measure of success come say to me, ‘You will fail. That’s inevitable. It’s what you do with it.’
— J.K. Rowling to Matt Lauer on NBC's Today.
Yeah, we’re always talking about following your passion, but we’re all part of the flow of history … you’ve got to put something back into the flow of history that’s going to help your community, help other people … so that 20, 30, 40 years from now … people will say, this person didn’t just have a passion, he cared about making something that other people could benefit from.
— Steve Jobs, as told by biographer Walter Isaacson
I encourage taking risks. What is the worst thing that can happen? You can go back and do what you were doing before.
— Cynthia Tidwell in an interview with Business Insider

Let Us Help You Maximize Your Career Search Strategy
Our team of experts can help you understand what YOU need for college and career success. We use proven assessments to examine your unique personality type, interests, and strengths. We align the results with your goals to create a strategy for your future growth and development through your college experience and career outlook. Our coaching empowers you to make decisions about which college institution, major, minor, courses, internships, work study opportunities, career industries, jobs, and more will give you the greatest enjoyment, while preparing you for your career.
 

Posted on June 19, 2018 and filed under Career.

How To Build Your Leadership Skills

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At some point on your career journey, you will probably be handed a leadership role. Maybe you will be asked to lead a team project or give a presentation. Or maybe you will oversee an entire branch of the company. Maybe an Executive position is even in your future! For whatever role you may be handed, it’s important to continuously build on your leadership skills. This will ensure long-term career success and will build your confidence.

Here are a few ways to develop professional leadership skills:

1. Take a personality test. Taking a personality test can be helpful when trying to determine what your strengths and weaknesses are. While it is important to understand your strengths and use them to your advantage, it is also equally imperative to understand where you can improve. It’s important to remember that weaknesses are not your downfall but rather areas you need to develop and build. Understanding what those weaknesses will provide better perspective for how you function individually and with a team. Personality tests are a fun and interesting way to learn more about yourself and develop your leadership skills.

There are a lot of personality tests out there; the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) Assessment personally changed Holly’s life and early career trajectory, so it’s our go-to when working with clients.

“The MBTI® Assessment is the most trusted and widely-used personality assessment tool. Supported by over 50 years of scientific research, as many as 1.5 million assessments are administered annually to employees of Fortune 100 and 500 companies, students and alumni at leading colleges and universities, and individuals seeking personal and professional growth. The MBTI® assessment provides insight into how we interact with the world, take in information, make decisions, and structure our environment, providing a powerful framework through which we can understand our own and others' behavior.”

Learn more about how you can invest in the MBTI® assessment.

2. Become a better listener. A great leader knows when to listen and when to direct. Being able to listen to ideas and suggestions can be a challenging skill to master but can make all the difference. Improving your listening skills can not only be beneficial to you but to the entire organization. It builds trust, respect and shows that you care.

3. Take initiative by volunteering beyond your job. Most companies have important work that isn’t getting done. Ask your company if you can help in these areas. Volunteering for extra tasks can help you expand your skill set while simultaneously helping the company. It shows your boss and others that you are not afraid to get your
hands dirty and that you want to be a leader.

4. Be a critical thinker, not just a doer. It’s easy to get tasks done, but what about taking it one extra step beyond what is expected of you? Critical thinking can efficiently address problems with new ideas beyond conventional solutions. It can also can give you an opportunity to impact the future of the organization by taking a broad, long-range approach to solving specific problems and making key decisions. View your work through multiple frames using objective analysis, forward thinking and planning. It will make you a strategic leader and a valuable asset to your team.

5. Be a constant learner. The best leaders are the best learners! Continuous learning is the ability to constantly develop your skills in order to perform job related tasks effectively and efficiently. Be a lifelong learner and you will find yourself met with success, both for you and your organization.

Leadership skills are essential in the workplace because they show that you have good interpersonal skills, the ability to coordinate, motivate and shape others decisions.

Posted on May 30, 2018 and filed under Leadership.

5 Ways To Model Healthy Leadership

Healthy Leadership

The textbook definition of “leader” is the person who commands a group or organization. Does this describe you at work? In a community group? At school? Among your peers?

A leader inspires, motivates, and encourages. Ideally, a leader models behavior that others should follow. Realistically, leaders are human and make mistakes. A leader may make a choice that, if others do the same, is not best for the greater good of the group/organization. There are countless examples of unhealthy leadership models in government and corporations alike. Turn on the local or national news tonight and you’re bound to see a handful of fallen leaders making headlines.

While we will all make mistakes in our career, it’s important to intentionally take steps to model healthy behavior for ourselves and for the good of those who follow us. If we don’t do this, we’ll burn out and grow stagnant in our success. Our followers will do the same. There are easy-to-implement steps we can take to ensure we are great leaders and are instilling healthy habits in our followers.

Here are five ways to model healthy leadership in your career:

  1. Make work/life balance a priority. If you are regularly going home only to shower and sleep a few hours before returning to work, you don’t have a healthy work/life balance. Similarly, if you haven’t taken a vacation in years, you don’t have a healthy work/life balance. If your followers see you burning the candle at both ends year-after-year, you are setting a precedent - this is how you lead and what you expect from other leaders in your group. There is a lot of research out there about why taking time off is good for your brain and productivity, so make sure you are balancing your time.

  2. Surround yourself with wise counsel. Everyone needs advice. Even Presidents and Kings have cabinets and courts to advise them in many different situations. It doesn’t matter how high up the corporate ladder you climb, seeking the opinion of a trusted friend, mentor, or colleague will result in success. This success will either be in your decision making, in your relationship building, or both. Either way, it’s a win-win. There is never a downside to seeking wise counsel.

  3. Collaborate, don’t divide. One of your goals as a leader should be to raise up people who can become leaders, too. This multiplies your team’s time and manpower, resulting in increased productivity and overall success. It also lends well to the philosophy that, “two heads are better than one” when considering your options and making the most informed decisions.

  4. Actively listen. One way you can earn the respect of your followers is to actively listen to what they have to say. If they want to offer feedback on your performance, listen intently, then consider the how and when this feedback applies. If they want to propose a new or different way of doing something, don’t brush them off. Not only will you earn respect, you might be pleasantly surprised by their amazing ideas! Learn more about how to actively listen here.

  5. Practice humility. No one likes to work for a leader who is arrogant. Balance your strengths and skills with the recognition that you can always improve. Practicing the previous four models of healthy leadership will naturally instill humility, as you realize that there are many people who can help and provide assistance to reach goals better than you could on your own. It’s not about you - it’s about the team and the overall good of your team and the projects you tackle.

What else would you add to this list? How do you model healthy leadership in your workplace?

 

Posted on April 6, 2018 and filed under Leadership.